Northern Ireland international turns out for Ipswich Town’s U23s - 10 years after his last game for the Blues
- Credit: Archant
There was a familiar name on the Ipswich Town Under 23s team sheet for Monday afternoon’s clash with Coventry City.
In amongst a group of promising teenagers and three young trialists for Kieron Dyer’s side was a Northern Ireland international with an Ipswich Town past – Chris Casement.
The 32-year-old played 14 senior games for the Blues between 2006 and 2008, having been given his debut by Joe Royle, and used that as a springboard to win a solitary international cap against Italy in Pisa in the summer of 2009.
Much of the season leading up to that had been spent on loan at Wycombe, having previously been at Hamilton and Millwall, and the academy product was released by Ipswich that summer.
The right-back is 32 now and is back in Suffolk after more than a decade away, with his release from Portman Road seeing him play briefly for Dundee in Scotland before spending the next 10 years with Linfield and Portadown in his homeland.
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He’s now playing for Stowmarket Town in the ninth tier of English football, while also helping out by coaching in the academy which helped produce him all those years ago.
That’s why he was involved in Tuesday’s game, which ended 1-1, stepping in to help out at a time when the Under 23s had lost many of their regular core to the first-team for Tuesday night’s Papa John’s Trophy game at Crawley.
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He featured in Stowmarket’s three games prior to non-league football being called to a halt due to the second coronavirus lockdown and figures to be an integral part of Rick Andrews’ side battle for promotion.
“Rick (Andrews) told me his plans for the club and where they want to be,” Casement said. “He sold the club really well to me, and I know a couple of the boys. Jack Ainsley was at Ipswich with me as a young boy.
“Playing in Europe and winning league titles, I want to bring that experience into the dressing room at Stowmarket. I’ll be doing everything I can to help the team make it a successful season this year.”